‘Tis the season of good cheer, warm fuzzies, special prezzies, and undeniable, escalating crazy. You know what I mean… holiday shopping that sadly turns sour after umpteen scowls and subtle shoves in the mayhem. The joy of finding the perfect gift then transforms into anxiety as the ‘day’ looms closer and impulse buying sky-rockets credit card debt. And finally, the glow of the Christmas lights that appear to dim as we experience utter exhaustion setting in.
As dazzling and magical as it begins, seems we head in each year in sweet anticipation, and end up wishing somehow it had all rolled out a little easier, less taxing, slower and more serenely so that we could have engaged in the moments and memories more, and found some rejuvenation in it all.
Well, the first step to healing is recognizing there is a pattern and mapping out a way for a change.
As a young girl, I experienced the joy, traditions, delights, and pressures of it all. And while I carry forth the trimming of the tree, listening to Bing, and allowing the memories of my family gathered for skating, hot chocolate sipping, baking and sampling Nana’s famous treats, warm me, in reflection I had always longed for something deeper. When I moved overseas at 25, alone, I came to understand the season in a different way. We couldn’t afford gifts or mailing packages back home, and I soon realized my family still loved me even if I didn’t go into debt to deliver. I found that homemade gifts are richer in the making and the offering, holidays are best experienced just being together with kindred souls and strangers-come-friends and above all, the most precious blessings come from seeing how and where we can serve those who find this time of year most difficult and daunting.
And so, new traditions were born and ease and grace discovered, and they continue to offer us all we could ever hope to know. Perhaps some of our ideas will fill you with your own and leave you transforming some of the holiday madness into mindful miracles that will enrich you beyond your imaginings.
Mad Ideas for Miracle Making:
- Set yourself a small budget for the season and stick to it. Find creative ways to give, as most of those receiving presents truly have all they need, and what they ultimately want is to know you thought of them with love. Some of the items we have made are: wind-chimes of wood, dangling washers spray-painted bright colors and tied with hemp string; ornaments of painted pine-cones; acrylic-painted drinking glasses; framed poem; or, a precious picture of a moment shared, framed with a poem etched on it or a poem or story of the event included within the frame or with the card. There are numerous ideas on Pinterest or within your mind and heart.
- Take one of those ideas, create and give to a charity of your choice. Each year our company Project YES! Life, through our Phone Booth Project initiative, engages families and community members in making and delivering creative gifts to those in need. Some of these ideas include: bracelet and book-mark making kits (includes beads, hemp string or necklace string and how-to instructions) for children in the hospital at Christmas so they have something fun to make; warm socks, mitts and hats delivered to places that serve the homeless; and, this year we made Star Intention Wands from natural items, inspired by nature artist Andrea Merredew, for Highbanks Society of Calgary, a shelter for teen-moms. The wand will be included in their educational programs, used as a fun way to make wishes, set goals and manifest their best life.
- Develop simple traditions for your family and include the hearts’ desires of each member. One evening sit by candlelight, before the holidays set in, and ask each person to share what makes the holiday special for them. You may be surprised that this list often shines with ‘time’ requests – skating, singing carols, sipping hot chocolate, sledding, walks, sharing Christmas stories or playing games.
Whatever brings peace and joy to the season is what we all ultimately desire.
Ask yourself, “What would this season look like, if I were to choose what I truly want for myself and those around me?” Whatever the answer, this is where to begin.
Wishing you and yours a time of reflection, connection, limitless love and pure joy!
– Jennifer Maki
(Want some more fun ideas on how to channel your Mad-Passion into Miracle-Making? Connect with a whole tribe of wanna-be Xtraordinary Game-Changers by downloading “The Mad Hero’s Manifesto.” In this free connect, you will gain access to our Star Intention Wand Mission Video & learn how to make your own! We are always better Suiting Up and Soaring Together!)